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Juniper Festival and Edinburgh's 56 North to unite to create the world's biggest ever gin tasting online

Scotland's original gin festival is teaming up with a Edinburgh's first gin bar in a bid to create the world's biggest ever gin tasting online - and they need your help.

Published: March 19, 2020
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Jamie Shields of Juniper Festival and James Sutherland of 56 North say they hope the virtual "tasting", which will be held via Facebook Live, Instagram Live, Twitter and YouTube Live will lift people's spirits during this trying time.

James and Jamie will host the event from 56 North in Edinburgh. Picture: 56 North

Aiming to get as many people as involved as possible, the special event will take place on Friday 27th March at 5.30 pm and will seek to encourage people to enjoy Scottish gins.

Posting about the special event online, James Sutherland wrote: "Everyone is possibly going to have to stay at home due to the outbreak so this is the virtual 'Friday night drinks', only it'll be with the entire online Scottish gin community."

Jamie Shields of Juniper Festival will co-host the special event with 56 North's James Sutherland. Picture: Juniper Festival

James confirmed he and Jamie Shields, who originally came up with the idea for his popular gin festival which is held at Summerhall every year, will host the tasting from the bar at 56 North, with any brands who are Edinburgh based or feel comfortable coming can come down to help.

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Jamie explained that they will be covering the "history of the UK gin scene", how to make home G&Ts and how to create some basic cocktails at home - all delivered with a little humour.

To get involved they are asking gin fans to do the following:

1. Buy a bottle of gin from their local distillery, brand new and sealed - either via a local shop or online to help support small producers.

2. Buys some decent mixers from the same sources as above.

3. Find some interesting garnishes at home

4. Make some good ice.

A free event, the pair say the idea came after a discussion about the coronavirus outbreak on the latest episode of their TalkGin podcast and that they are hoping to try to get the Guinness Book of Records involved in some format.

The idea is already gaining widespread support from the Scottish gin community online with many pledging to get involved.

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Jamie Shields said: "We're all facing uncharted waters at the moment - drinkers can't go to bars to enjoy their favourite gins, and James and I have fewer people to talk to about gin!

"Having a live tasting is a great way of supporting gin producers, consumers, and everyone in between during a pretty tricky time for us all."

Driven by a passion for all things drinks-related, Sean writes for The Scotsman extensively on the subject. He can also sometimes be found behind the bar at the world famous Potstill bar in Glasgow where he continues to enhance his whisky knowledge built up over 10 years advising customers from all over the world on the wonders of our national drink. Recently, his first book was published. Dubbed Gin Galore, it explores Scotland's best gins and the stories behind those that make them.

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